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I AM an artist.

I am an artist?

A few things have got me into some deeper thinking this week ….

When do you begin to say “I am an artist?”

One of the groups I am in had a conversation about this recently. I’m sure it is tied into imposter syndrome… the I’m not good enough syndrome…. And that again has cropped up in another group. Are you an artist? Our inner cynic comes along and tells us we can’t be… we are not professional… we do it as a hobby or we are not good enough.

Yesterday I went along to a concert by the Cambridge University Experimental Music Ensemble. A new group of the most amazing and talented musicians I have seen in a very very long time. I wasn’t sure what to expect but we need so much more of this. A combination of sounds and voice that was a pleasure to experience. I saw the music and it is marked with timings… each performer following a timer on their stand. This is not the norm in an orchestra ! In art we accept abstract but I really hope that this group goes on to challenge this in music as well. The key for me was the quality of sound of their instruments and playing. These are artists interpreting music (and words) in a fresh way. If I had listened to this music and these performers at a BBC Prom it would not have been out of place. In fact I really hope they can do this in the future !

It challenged my thinking of music in much the way we are challenged about what is art and what it means to call yourself an artist.

A child makes marks on paper…. Later those marks become less abstract and more figurative. Are they an artist is this art? Of course they are. Are the doodles that I have been working on still art? Of course they are …

If you create a response to what is around you … an image.. an idea… a notion… you are an artist…. Whether that’s developing, emerging, amateur or professional is a different thing.

Being an artist isn’t just about having it as a job. As an artist we are responding to the world around us. For some that isn’t just through art itself but also dance, music, literature.

Are you an artist? Do you respond to what is around you in an artistic way? Then own that title and be proud of it… Am I an artist? Yes I AM an artist. Are you an artist? Yes… you are. Own the title and be so very proud of using it if this is what you do.

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